Tag Archives: spring break

Students anchored to Indiana during mid-semester breaks

Art by Sam Haney

Story By Natalie Clare

Seagulls graze the wave peaks, searching for lunch. The air smells like salt, with sand being picked up in its wind. The sun beats down and… DING DING DING. The alarm clock reads 7 in the morning and we are brought back to reality. Time to go to practice.

I have been a runner since the sixth grade, and have also not been on a spring or fall break vacation since then. With the amount of work that is put into a sport, many athletes cannot afford to take spring break off.

For myself, running is a sport based on building upon speed and endurance. Taking a break can halt your progress, and even lose some. Therefore, I do not have the flexibility to take a vacation right in the middle of season. Leaving would be detrimental to my performance for outdoor season.

This is why we should have longer summer and winter breaks. Spring and fall breaks come very abruptly, right in the middle of a working period. Sports are mid-season. School is halfway through a semester. The breaks are just too long, and not beneficial to the majority of the school population.

According to a National Federation of State High School Associations’ (NFHS) study, over 7.6 million students played sports in the 2010-2011 school year. The NFHS also said that 55.5 percent of all high school students play a sport. Therefore, about 1,000 students at FC play a sport, anchoring half of the school to southern Indiana sports practices.

Although students are not forced to stay, FC is a competitive school. It would be detrimental to not practice with teammates. For track, competing against teammates helps to push you into a faster time, something that is extremely hard to do alone. But in the summer and winter, running is in its off-season and our schedule is much more flexible.

This does not just apply to athletics, but academics are halted because of spring and fall breaks. With a semester being cumulative, having a break between each quarter is difficult to come back from. Students are expected to come back from break ready to move on to the next lesson, or even to pick up from where they left off. There are also teachers who give homework over break. Instead of dragging ourselves into school, we are forced to do homework “from the comfort of our own bed.” Our brains and body never get to use spring and fall break for what they are intended for: giving students a time to rejuvenate and finish the second half of the semester.  

What is the point in a break if we do not actually get to take one? We should shorten both spring and fall break to one week and lengthen summer and winter.

There are many benefits to having long breaks after each semester. In the eyes of an athlete, we are in off season and just conditioning. Therefore, we would actually be able to let our bodies and minds rest. For academics, the semester is ended with finals, so the vast majority of teachers will not assign additional homework over the breaks.

Additionally, colleges are designed to have long summer and winter breaks already. So, if high school is meant to prepare students for college, why not have similar schedules as well? It seems redundant to have the several breaks throughout your whole high school career and then be thrown into a brand new schedule cold turkey once graduated.

With colleges in mind, a longer summer would mean more time to complete college courses early, as well as participate in other activities. Students could get a summer job and learn how to save money before going to college.

The purpose of a break is to allow students, and educators, a much-needed time away from school and allow our bodies and minds time to rest. With each semester being so demanding and mentally taxing, a true break is needed in order to excel to the full extent the whole school year.

As an active student, participating in a demanding sport, honors and high-level classes, and many other after school activities, a longer summer and winter break would be very beneficial to my needs. My schedule mirrors that of many students at FC.

“Longer summer and winter breaks would allow me more time to train for the season. It would also give me a chance to take summer classes,” said sophomore Sarah Langdon. “I have to take personal finance over the summer, but with such a short summer I’m not sure when I can take it. So, I’m going to have to do it over vacation and probably won’t do as well. If we had longer summers, I wouldn’t have to rush through training and summer classes and then finally get a break for a quick vacation.”

Short breaks are redundant in the fact that they are too short to accomplish anything. Spring and fall breaks result in homework because they cut right in the middle of lessons. Summer and winter breaks are too short to participate in summer jobs, camps, or additional classes all at the same time.

So, for those of you going on a sunbathing on a beach in Florida, or hiking up the Appalachian Mountains in North Carolina this week, remember those who are anchored to Indiana, turning off that annoying alarm clock, getting up and putting in the work—all while supposedly having a break.  

FC Bronze Ringers perform in Disney World

By Hannah Tarr

Last Monday, the FC Bronze Ringers shined a light on an otherwise gray and dismal day in Disney World’s Disney Springs. From a lakefront landing called Waterview Park, 13 of the renowned handbell choir members performed Disney hits for the enjoyment of the tourists passing by.

FC was recruited to perform in Disney by Disney Performing Arts. This organization focuses on giving high school performing arts groups the chance to perform in exhibition or competition in their parks, according to handbells director Angela Hampton.

“[Disney Performing Arts] very often will send this stuff out, ‘Hey, bring your group out and play’,” Hampton said.

Interested groups, including the Bronze Ringers, will then send in an application, photographs, and audition tapes. If Disney thinks the group has the ability, they will place the group in a venue.

“Two of the times the handbells have performed in Disney, that venue has been Epcot,” said Hampton. The other two were both in Disney Springs, Disney’s shopping district. All four performances have been in exhibition, though there are competitive festivals a few times a year.

Traveling to Disney was optional for FC handbell students. Of the 40-something Bronze Ringers Hampton said she directs, 13 chose to travel to Orlando over Spring Break to perform.

“I love Disney, and I love handbells,” said senior Isabelle Langford. Because of that, her decision of whether or not to go to Disney was a simple one.

Hampton, a self-described “Disney junkie,” was excited not only for the trip itself, but for the educational value of performing — for both musicians and audience members.

“A lot of people don’t even know what handbells is,” she said. “So we get to kind of show people what it is that we do.”

Most important, though, is the students getting to perform in an entirely different environment than the one they are used to. When performing for family members in Floyds Knobs, it is assumed that the audience will appreciate the performance. But down in Florida, the audience could be entirely critical strangers.

“The exposure outside of that comfortable element is really good, and it makes you better every time,” said Hampton.

The students had a different way of putting it, though. After the performance, sophomores Delaney Bigler and Delaney Agnew agreed on a phrase to describe the performance: “nerve-racking.”

“But we overcame our challenges,” said Bigler. “We just played through.”

Overcoming the challenges that often come with performing was part of the magic of the Spring Break trip, and the challenges didn’t stop there. In the hour leading up to the Bronze Ringers’ performance, there was a rain shower, as there so often is during Florida afternoons. The rain let up just in time, but the performers feared its return.

“I was really nervous about the performance because of the rain threat and the wind,” said Langford. That wind which had come with the storm proved to be a real nuisance. It furiously tore at the performers’ music- so much so that Langford said that at one point, the music of everyone around her flipped to the back page. They were all playing from memory for about a page until she got a chance to flip her music again.

In spite of so many factors working against them, the Bronze Ringers raised their bells in unison as Hampton conducted them to do so. On her cue, they rang their bells in melody and harmony, sending sparkling Disney tunes through the air of Disney Springs, just like Disney magic.

“I think we did a great job,” said Langford. “Plus, we were playing at the happiest place on Earth, which made it even better.”

 

Diverse activities provide opportunities to explore in Kentuckiana during spring break

By Delaney Smith and Sydney Sears

While many students are packing for their extravagant vacations, others are staying put this spring break. Though most stuck at home imagine it to be a dull and eventless break, there are many things to do at home in Kentuckiana.

Skyzone, located at 2671 Technology Drive, Jeffersontown Ky., is one option. It includes a giant room full of trampolines to jump on, along with other activities including the trampolines. The prices vary from $9.00 to 20.00.

Sophomore Tony Murphy has visited Skyzone.

“There is nothing really to compare it to; it is an experience all its own.”

Another option while at home during next week is to visit the walking bridge in downtown Louisville over the Ohio River. There is no cost, so this is preferable for anyone on a budget. Here you can do various activities along with walking including running and biking.

Junior Mikaela Click walked and took pictures of the sunset while visiting the walking bridge.

“I’d recommend it because it’s super rad and awesome,” said Click.

Downtown Louisville also has many options. The Louisville Science Center, located at 727 W. Main Street in Louisville, is a good place to go on a cold or rainy day. It is a fun and educational place that you can take  friends or siblings. It costs $13 for adults and $11 for children.

“I have been and it is a very fun place to go especially with friends. You learn and see a lot of cool and interesting things,” said sophomore Kailey Haydon.

One of the most talked about events over the break is the release of the first movie of the Divergent trilogy. Divergent premieres in theaters tonight.

“The Divergent movie is a great way to kick off spring break. It is going to be amazing,” said Haydon.

Along with all those options there are also many other things in the area such as, the Louisville Zoo, Earth and Fire Pottery, the YMCA and the many shopping malls in the area.

Ten Minutes Or Less: Spring Break, Star Trek, Skyrim, and more ramblings

By Patrick Prifogle and JT Samart

Welcome to ‘Ten Minutes Or Less’, the Bagpiper‘s new weekly podcast. We will be publishing each and every Thursday until the end of the year. This week we have two special guests on the podcast,  junior Tyler Tuma  is here to talk about what he will be up to this spring break and senior Daniel Vance is here to discuss is role in the band’s POPs concert. Additional content covered in the second podcast includes Skyrm and Star Trek.

Click below to hear Patrick and JT’s second podcast.

Ten Minutes Or Less #2